Second, I am of the opinion we have spent the last 20 years regressing in our sophistication. We graduated from TeX (LaTeX) to word processing - great, way to replace something awesome with a steaming pile.
We graduated from Vi and Emacs to GUI-centric coding systems like Eclipse, NetBeans, IntelliJ and Visual Studio. These are good IDEs, but they basically suck at text editing.
From the SchemeWiki:
And so it is. Many of us actually choose to use older-style software simply because it is more powerful. As the guys over at the site for the Ion Window Manager say:Its a shame that the students of our generation grew up with windows and mice because that tainted our mindset not to think in terms of powerful tools. Some of us are just so tainted that we will never recover. -- Jeffrey Mark Siskind in comp.lang.lisp
All this is to say: just because software is old does not mean it is somehow "bad". In some ways, the lack of resources we had then led us to design more beautiful systems that ended up being more usable.So-called "modern desktop environments" converge on total unusability, and present-day mainstream graphical user interfaces in general are far less usable than they are praised to be. Usability simply does not equal low learning curve, and hiding system details from the user, as the Official Truth seems to be these days.
... Those of us who prefer to use the computer primarily with the keyboard for reasons of efficiency or health, are forgotten when "modern" graphical programs are designed. Mouse-based search-and-click interfaces simply are not efficient except for some very specialised tasks and in other cases involve lots of tedious repetitive clicking and searching.
You can write a small letter to Grandma in the filename. -- Forbes Burkowski, CS, University of Washington